FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas senior catcher Tucker Pennell was signed as a free agent by the San Diego Padres over the weekend, making him the fifth Razorback to sign a pro contract since the MLB Draft two weeks ago.
From Georgetown, Texas, Pennell was Arkansas’ primary catcher for the 2016 season as he started 40 games and batted .265 with 36 hits, 10 being doubles, two home runs and 12 RBIs, which were all season-highs as a Razorback.
Pennell had one of the best arms behind the plate in the Southeastern Conference, throwing out 27 of 51 base stealers for a .654 stolen base allowed percentage. The 27 caught stolen bases led the conference all season and was the most by a Razorback catcher in a single season since Brady Toops had 27 in 2004.
His performance all year helped him earn his way onto the Johnny Bench Award Watch List, which is comprised of the best catchers in the nation.
Pennell also had one of his best years with the bat as he recorded seven multi-hit games, three being of three hits or more. His perfect 4-for-4 game against LSU in early May set a career-high for hits in a game and made him one of only two Razorbacks to have four hits in a single game this season (Rick Nomura).
Pennell finished his two-year Razorback career with a .238 batting average with 55 hits in 90 games played.
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